Works in Progress

I am the heart of Cape Breton. My emergence soon included Mi’kmaq people, who have evolved and grown with me. But my life is much longer than theirs and so I have watched them come and go for over 400 generations. Through their passing they gradually have come to know parts of me by watching, listening and taking nourishment from me. Recently others have come from across the sea, bringing with them many more of their kind and a different means of understanding me. They can now begin to read the diaries that I have been carefully engraving in the soils, rock, water, and trees that record my passing. Together they have formed CEPI. By combining their knowledge and wisdom they are now beginning to fully understand my enormity and complexity.

Come ­work with me.

At the 2004 CEPI Workshop in Wagmatcook, six issues were identified as priorities to be addressed by collaborative planning and management. These issues are as follows: water quality; fisheries; forestry; land use and development; invasive species; climate change.

The Bras d’Or Lakes CEPI, with funding and the in-kind support from its partners, is currently conducting three research projects in the watershed.

  • An inventory and assessment of barachois ponds started in 2013 continues, with nearly 150 ponds having been visited so far.
  • Water quality and sediment quality samples are being analyzed from each of the six oyster sanctuaries in the Bras d’Or, to examine what land practices might be affecting the oysters.
  • The CEPI also supports UINR’s Joint Enforcement Patrol program which educates pleasure craft operators on public safety and environmental stewardship of the Lakes (e.g. proper sewage disposal).

The upcoming CEPI conference is bringing together the people of Cape Breton Island and others from across the country to discuss and determine best sustainable practices focusing on six pillars: Forestry; Agriculture; Aquaculture; Mining; Tourism and Alternative Energy.

The conference outcomes will determine the next steps. 

Watch a short video introducing these issues: